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What Is Radon And What Are Its Effects?

radonRadon is a type of radioactive gas that occurs naturally where radium and uranium are found. It is not able to be seen, tasted or smelled. Radon can be found in rock, water and soil. If there are sources of radon in the soil or well water surrounding your home, you may become exposed to the harmful effects of the substance. It is not a case of where the radon is, rather how much is present, since this substance is present all over the world.

Radon can enter your home through pores, openings and cracks in any areas of your home, however are most likely to enter in the lower areas, such as crawl spaces and basements. A small amount of radon may also enter your home through a well water source.

The Radon Concern

Once radon has entered a building it can be easily spread in the air. The decay products that result from the process can form different types of bismuth, polonium and lead. Unlike the radon gas, the radon decay products are actually solid particles. These particles will become suspended in the air and since they are so small they can be inhaled and easily attach to your lung tissue. These radon decay products have a very short half-life, which actually means that they decay quickly after formation. The problem is that if you inhale these particles they will decay within the lungs before the lungs can cleanse themselves. This is what poses the health risk for anyone exposed to radon particles.

Cancer Causing Particles

When any radon decay product is inhaled, it will stick to your sensitive tissue in your lungs. When they break down in your lungs, your tissue will be exposed to radiation. The radioactive particles that result can actually kill the lung tissue however can be replaced naturally by your body. However, the alpha particles that are released may impact your DNA, which will create a type of chemical reaction, causing a mutation.

Lung cancer can be developed due to radon exposure. The chance that you will develop this problem will be dependent on the concentration of radon that you are exposed to and the amount of time you are exposed to it. There have been cases of radon exposure traced back to the 1400’s. This exposure can lead to cancer, which is one of the leading causes of lung cancer.

If you want to know how much radon is in or around your home, contact radon mitigation services for help. They can test your well water and soil around your home to determine the amount of radon that is present. This can help you ensure the health and well-being of yourself, as well as your family.

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